Limiting puppy's exercise.

Discussion in 'Puppy Forum' started by Dizzy, Oct 12, 2012.

  1. Dizzy

    Dizzy Sit! Good dog.

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    How do you manage this?

    Fred is in a crate when we are out (he's not left more than 4 hrs at a time usually), and out when we are home.

    He's not going on walks (he's had maybe 3 outings). He gets to play around our property, but usually just to toilet. Sometimes he potters round while the other half works in the day. We've put a barrier up to stop him climbing the stairs.

    Yet, last night the show club man commented on how he's muscling up already. Is that bad? Is he getting too much free time?? He'd go stir crazy if he was cooped up all day and night.

    How exactly do you monitor the 5 mins per month rule? It seems unrealistic.
     
  2. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    I have never limited a puppies activity level. I don't force them for sure, but they get to romp around and chase other dogs through the fields, jump, pounce and be puppies...
     
  3. Dizzy

    Dizzy Sit! Good dog.

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    What about their joints? Is there any weight to the arthritis stuff? Fred's not a small dog, I don't want him to damage himself.

    Bodhi got as much exercise as she wanted at all ages.... She's 7 and no joint issues at all...
     
  4. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    He's not really a large breed either. If he was a newf, or some other heavy giant breed... then maybe. He isn't going to be larger or heavier than the canine body was intended to be. (issues often show up when breeds physically deviate greatly from the 'wolf' phenotype) So normal activity shouldn't cause any problems in a healthy dog, any more than kids running around and playing is going to be bad for them as adults.

    But as long as you aren't forcing him he should be fine. Romping and playing is what puppies do. You want him to build strong bones and ligaments. The only way to do that is to let him exercise and healthily stress his body.
     
  5. Dizzy

    Dizzy Sit! Good dog.

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    We'll carry on as we are then :)
     
  6. Barb04

    Barb04 Love my pets Staff Member

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    I've never heard of a 5 minutes per month rule. I would say let Fred play and enjoy himself. I wouldn't over do the running by making him run constantly after balls, etc. but play is good for him. I've had some dogs that got muscular without hardly any exercise.
     
  7. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    In general I've only heard people discuss limiting *forced* or on lead exercise for growing pups and minimizing jumping down onto hard surfaces. Off lead, puppy led exercise is fine and encouraged.
     
  8. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Free exercise is more than ok! When a puppy is allowed to free-choice exercise, they can also choose to stop and rest if needed, protecting their joints from overuse. If they are forced to exercise via bike rides, runs, long walks, fetch, etc. that's when their joints are at risk because they can't stop if they feel the need.
     
  9. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    I'm with SaraB an stardogs... I think the 5 min/month rule is malarky, myself, when it comes to free play rather than forced exercise. That is, IMO puppies can run around out in the yard all they want but I'm not going to walk them for long periods of time.

    When they are engaged in free play they are working a lot of different muscle groups, moving this way and that way, jumping, turning, stopping to sniff, resting... it's not the same repetitive motions, so no particular muscle or joint is getting overly taxed. Healthy joints NEED strong healthy muscles to develop properly, resting puppies too much is actually counterproductive IMO.
     
  10. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Forgot this.

    Also, now is the time they are learning body coordination. If you keep a puppy from jumping/leaping now when they are growing, how can you expect them to safely complete those actions when they are older?
     
  11. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    I always thought it wasn't really limiting as much as NOT forcing.
    Like, running in play is good, but forcing a pup to run/job alongside you on a leash..bad.

    As with the "no running jumping for 2 months" after spay/neuter rule lol It's one of those things I kind of played by ear lol
     
  12. Red.Apricot

    Red.Apricot Active Member

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    I would never have survived if I could only let Elsie exercise 5 minutes/month of age/day.

    I just didn't make her keep up with me (on the bike is really the only place it came up) until she was about a year old.
     
  13. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    I never bought into that stuff. I let them do what they wanted pretty much. But I never thought it was a good idea to take them on a leash and force them to do the same pace, the same gait for extended periods. But when Lyric, my Doberman was a pup, but already fairly tall...and I'd let him out the door, he was so enthusiastic, there was no holding him back. He'd leap off the front porch, 4 or 5 steps down and land on the concrete, then go zooming around the property. I'd cringe a little when he landed kind of hard on the concrete, but short of a leash, there was nothing at that time I could do about it. He leaped over logs in the woods when he was 4 months old, crash around through the brush, zoom all over. And he grew up to be very strong, very athletic and had NO problems with joints of bones. I figure if it hurts, they'll slow down or not do something that causes pain.

    In agility, he was to do only very low jumps that the toy breeds used because he was younger than a year. It was sort of puppy agility and everything was pretty tame. But as he'd jump over these very low jumps, he'd jump way, way, way higher than needed. LOL. He was so joyful and already at home would jump over logs that were a couple feet off the ground at least.... so it didn't make much sense to me to have him jump over agility jumps that were only about 8" high. :D
     
  14. Kyllobernese

    Kyllobernese Member

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    I also think that 5 minute rule is not meant for free play and I think it gives the wrong impression. Puppies from the time they are up on their feet and running around, exercise longer than that. As long as you are not forcing a dog to walk for miles when they are young, any amount of free playing is fine.

    I have never crated a dog after spaying, just let them do their normal thing, other than not letting them jump up on things.
     
  15. Greenmagick

    Greenmagick New Member

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    Just agreeing with everyone else. I have never heard the 5 min rule refer to free play, only to walks/forced activity. Free play...let them play!
     
  16. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    A puppy builds bone density with exercise, and with restricted exercise their bones will remain weak - and thus the joints won't be in their prime either. They need exercise, on their terms. I wouldn't confine a puppy just to prevent exercise, I feel like that does mroe harm than good.

    I also would want a puppy to learn to use stairs safely sooner rather than later. Teaching an adult dog to use stairs doesn't sound like fun, and depending on the dog's reactions and the type of stairs it could even be dangerous.

    To me it seems limiting exercise so much would only harm the pup. I'd let him exercise as much as he wants so long as it's not forced exercise.
     
  17. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

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    limiting a puppy's movement to prevent injury down the road is a piece of advice I'd toss in the trash. Puppies are playful for a reason They learn body coordination, they explore their world, they build muscle and ligaments and tendons get stronger, movement stimulates the brain, everything good comes from movement as puppies.

    Don't leash them up and go for a 10 mile bike ride, but if left to their own choices, they should move as much as they want.
     

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